West Papua Independence Day, December 1
Supporters of the rights of the West Papuan people opposing Indonesian occupation will gather at Parliament in Wellington on ‘Independence Day’ — December 1.
West Papua has been occupied by the Indonesian military since it was handed over, against the will of the indigenous population, to Indonesia in 1963.
For the past forty-eight years, the people of West Papua have been subjected to gross human rights violations including rape, torture, cultural genocide, murder and massacre. More than 100,000 West Papuans have been killed. Many live in exile because it is not safe for them to go home.
Multi-national corporations in cahoots with the Indonesian authorities have exploited West Papua’s natural resources to an extraordinary degree.
Massive social dislocation
This has caused massive social dislocation, devastation of rain forests, pollution of streams and rivers on which the local people depend for their survival, and serious human rights violations in areas where multinationals operate.
West Papua Independence Day is the anniversary of the 1961 West Papuan Declaration of Independence from Dutch colonial rule.
In West Papua, people mark Independence Day in a variety of ways, including raising the Morning Star (the West Papuan flag) – despite the threat of arrest and murder.
In previous years, the Indonesian military and police have responded with increased violent oppression around this day, arresting and killing those they perceive as pro-independence activists. West Papua Independence Day is marked by solidarity events around the world, including in Wellington and Auckland.
Gathering in Parliament grounds
In Wellington, supporters plan to gather in Parliament grounds at 1pm in solidarity with the people of West Papua to fly the Morning Star flag, with the opportunity to write a personal message in support of justice, peace and self-determination for West Papua.
You can RSVP to this event at http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=293668230653318 and an A4 flyer is available at http://www.converge.org.nz/pma/wp011211w.pdf Organised by Peace Movement Aotearoa, for more information contact email firstname.lastname@example.org